Perugia, the capital city of Umbria in central Italy, is often overlooked as travelers rush towards the more famous Tuscan cities. However, this enchanting city, perched atop a hill and enveloped by ancient walls, offers rich history, artistic legacy, and culinary delights that captivate those who venture here.


Umbrian cuisine is defined by its use of fresh, local ingredients. Here are some of the must-try dishes and products in Perugia:

  1. Chocolate: Perugia is famous for its chocolate. Take advantage of the Eurochocolate Festival in October. Try Baci Perugina, chocolate kisses filled with hazelnut.
  2. Umbrian Truffles: Enjoy dishes infused with the flavors of black and white truffles, a regional delicacy.
  3. Torta al Testo: This flatbread is traditionally filled with ham, cheese, or vegetables. It's a simple yet delicious treat.
  4. Strangozzi: This Umbrian pasta is typically served with a rich truffle or tomato sauce.
  5. Umbrian Wines: Sip on local wines such as Sagrantino di Montefalco and Orvieto.


  1. Historical Centre: Wander through the medieval streets and discover Perugia's rich history. Visit the Etruscan Arch, one of the city gates dating back to the Etruscans.
  2. Art and Museums: Perugia is home to the Galleria Nazionale dell'Umbria, which houses an impressive medieval and Renaissance art collection.
  3. Music and Festivals: Umbria Jazz Festival in July is one of Europe's most famous jazz events. The city is also known for the International Journalism Festival.
  4. Università per Stranieri: This University for Foreigners is a hub for students from around the world coming to learn the Italian language and culture.

Travel Tips

  1. Getting Around: Perugia's Minimetrò is an efficient way to travel between the city center and its outskirts. Walking is the best way to explore the historic center.
  2. Learn Italian Phrases: Knowing basic Italian can enrich your interactions with locals.
  3. Stay within the City Walls: Accommodations within the city walls keep you close to major attractions.
  4. Market Visits: Visit local markets such as Mercato Coperto to buy fresh produce and local crafts.
  5. Day Trips: Use Perugia as a base to explore other Umbrian towns like Assisi and Spello.

Interesting Facts

  1. Perugia was once a critical Etruscan city; remnants of the Etruscan walls and gates are still visible.
  2. The town is famous for the Perugina chocolate company, founded in 1907.
  3. Perugia hosts one of Italy's most important jazz festivals, Umbria Jazz, attracting big names and enthusiasts worldwide.
  4. The city has an underground cityscape; Rocca Paolina is a series of streets and squares built atop, sometimes incorporating medieval homes.

Top Places

  1. Piazza IV Novembre: This square is the heart of Perugia, surrounded by historic buildings, including the Cathedral of San Lorenzo and the Fontana Maggiore.
  2. Palazzo dei Priori: This Gothic palace, one of Italy's finest, houses the Galleria Nazionale dell'Umbria and the city's government offices.
  3. Rocca Paolina: This fortress houses an entire medieval neighborhood within its walls.
  4. Etruscan Well (Pozzo Etrusco): This ancient well showcases the engineering prowess of the Etruscans.
  5. Morlacchi Theatre: Catch an opera or concert in this charming 18th-century theatre.
  6. San Pietro Church and Abbey: Known for its beautifully decorated interior and garden with views over the valley.
  7. Aqueduct: This pedestrian walkway offers stunning views and is perfect for a romantic stroll.

Perugia, with its meandering streets, majestic buildings, and delectable cuisine, is a jewel in the heart of Italy. As you walk its ancient paths and savor its culinary delights, you will be transported to a world that beautifully weaves the threads of history, culture, and art. Keep this hidden gem hidden from your Italian journey.